Suspect arrested in Pettis County homicide, alleged accomplice at large
PETTIS COUNTY - The Pettis County Sheriff's Office and the Independence Police Department arrested a man suspected of killing Leon Hinckley on Aug. 17, and said one suspect is still on the run.
On Friday, prosecutors charged Branden Lee Hendren, 23, of Independence with first-degree murder, armed criminal action, and attempted robbery. They also charged Ronald Maurice Cage, 29, of Kansas City with second-degree murder, armed criminal action, attempted robbery, receiving stolen property, and unlawful possession of a gun
According to a probably cause statement, Hendren and Cage were with Hinckley for about an hour prior to the shooting. Based on witness statements, deputies said Hendren and Cage demanded Hinckley “empty his pockets” and give them what he had. Hendren then hit Hinckley with the butt of the rifle before shooting him.
Witnesses said Hendren shot Hinckley with a rifle, and that Cage was armed with a revolver. Both then drove away in a black car, which was later found in Lafayette County. Authorities found a revolver matching the description of the one Cage allegedly had inside the car.
Deputies also found electronic evidence linking Hendren and Cage, and a CrimeStoppers caller said both men had broken into her house and were looking for Hinckley. Cage was apparently mad at Hinckley over a prior drug deal.
According to investigators, Hendren is under investigation for another homicide, this one in Kansas City from before Hinckley’s death. Cage is also wanted for a separate robbery in KC.